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Poland Relay set for June 23

June 7, 2018
J.T. Whitehouse , The Town Crier

At 11 a.m. on June 23 the 2018 Poland Relay for Life will kick off at Poland Seminary High School's stadium. The event will only run 12 hours this year.

"The new 12-hour format includes a very busy and fun schedule for the entire family," said event leadership team member Holly Marshall. "This is the first year we are not going overnight. We discovered that the overnight hours haven't been worth the cost for our event; very few people come in overnight. Hopefully, we'll see an increase in funds and participation this year."

This year's event is a "Luau for Life." It includes the annual Kids' Party that will take place at 1 p.m. with cake, games and prizes for children ages 10 and under. The first 20 children in the gate will receive a free "Luau for Life" T-shirt, designed by Austintown fifth grade student Lillie Marshall.

Article Photos

Lillie Marshall shows support of the Poland Relay with a special designed T-shirt she came up with. 

Lillie is the daughter of Jason and Janette Marshall and has been an active member of the Poland Relay for Life since 2014. She has been a volunteer server at the Survivor dinner for the past three years. Lillie is very proud to have her design featured on this year's Kids' Party T-shirts.

"Lillie is my granddaughter," Holly said. "She got involved because my mother had cancer as well as several members of Lillie's mother's family."

As a member of the leadership team along with Debbie Ziccardi, Holly has to work on the survivor dinner and activities.

"Our Relay for Life Survivor activities will begin at 5 p.m. with Survivor recognition, the crowning of our Survivor royalty and Survivor and caregiver laps around the track," Holly said. "Following the laps, the Survivor Dinner will begin. Every Survivor will receive a free Survivor T-shirt and a goodie bag and each Survivor is encouraged to bring a caregiver escort to the dinner. The Luau for Life theme will be featured in the menu with pulled pork, tropical fruit salad, roasted potatoes, tossed salad, cake and pineapple centerpieces."

The nine registered Poland Relay for Life teams will be featuring food and raffle baskets at their own tents that day and vendors will be on site. There will be games and activities for all ages throughout the day.

The always inspiring Luminaria lighting will end the event with an inspirational and moving ceremony.

"This event is free and a great way to have quality time with your family," Holly said. "Come spend the day with us and see what Relay is all about."

This year's goal is $55,000, which the Poland Relay has until August to meet or beat.



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